The Canadian Premier League showed off the 2020 away uniforms for all eight clubs a couple of weeks ago, with the release of the “City Edition” kits.
With all 16 kits now revealed, there is debate as to which one is the best/worst, which club has the best combo overall, and if the kits are as good as last year’s.
I also, of course, have my opinions on all 16, and below you will find my ranking, starting at 16 and working up the list to the best one.
16) York9 FC away
This kit has fantastic elements within it, but ultimately is the worst of the 16 in my opinion. Y9’s bright green really pops on the dark black kit, but that isn’t enough to overlook the map on the front of the kit. I really like the green outline of York Region, but having the names of each of the nine municipalities doesn’t really work for me on a kit, it would be better as another piece of merchandise, perhaps a t-shirt or poster. If it were just the outline without the names, this kit wouldn’t be 16th.
15) Valour FC home
This kit would higher up this list, if not for one thing: the double collar. While I like how unique it is, I’m not a fan. Having a double collar is already peculiar, but having one side stick out like that knocks it down this list, when it easily could have been in the top 5, or higher, without it.
14) Atletico Ottawa away
This graphic on this shirt is nice, but it’s a bit simple overall compared to other kits on this list. There’s a great outline of Parliament Hill across the front, and the kit is solid overall, but its simplicity makes it difficult to place it higher on the list. I also wish the graphic was a bit more central, and not tucked under the arm, but I’m sure that was done on purpose.
13) Pacific FC away
Like the previous kits, there are good elements to this one, but they aren’t executed in the right way for my liking. There is a brilliant nod to Fisgard Lighthouse, a landmark on the west coast, but it’s hidden under the left arm, instead of in a location where people can see it. That’s unfortunately a common theme on the away kits, as you’ve already seen (and will continue to see) on this list, and blocks the best thing about the kit.
12) Forge FC away
This kit is pretty good, but I don’t really understand the graphic on the (wearer’s) left side of the kit. It is apparently inspired by the Gore Park Fountain in Hamilton, but doesn't really look like it. According to the graphic the club put out, it is also representative of Hamilton’s “diverse arts and culture movement,” so maybe it’s an abstract fountain.
The kit is nice enough, however, and I really like how the orange accents and sponsor stand out on the black background.
11) HFX Wanderers away
This one is similar to a couple of the kits above in the sense that the best part of it is hidden from the front angle. There’s a really nice graphic of the Macdonald Bridge, but some of it is hidden down the side. That’s my biggest overall criticism of the away kits generally, and HFX were part of the group of teams who did it.
10) FC Edmonton home
2020 is FC Edmonton’s 10th anniversary, and this kit celebrates that. The “X” under the is the roman numeral for 10, but beyond that, there isn’t really anything spectacular about it. It’s simple, but there’s also nothing wrong with it, putting it into the top 10.
9) Cavalry FC away
At first glance I wasn’t a fan of this kit, but the more I look at it, the more I like it. The red and black gradient on the bottom looks like a nice sunrise over the Rocky Mountains, with the darker “reflection” of the mountains in the water below. I think this kit is brilliant, and uses the Cavalry colours well.
8) Pacific FC home
The “Starfish Purple” colour on Pacific’s kits may be the best colour in the league, and while I do think last year’s home kit was better, they’ve done a pretty good job again in 2020. There’s a gradient, made up of stars, down the front of the kit, and the trident makes a return on the back of the kit. Overall a pretty sweet uniform.
7) Valour FC away
The gold accents and sponsor on this kit are sensational, and complete an already-good design. Across the bottom is the skyline of Winnipeg, featuring the Provencher Bridge, Canadian Museum for Human Rights and Fort Garry Place. The red accents on the sleeve complete a brilliant kit.
6) Forge FC home
Some people aren’t a fan of this kit, but I love it. Grey, white and orange is a nice combination, and the addition of the gold “Canadian Premier League Champions” badge on the right sleeve is beautiful. They did steal York9’s “nine municipalities” thing, as the six horizontal stripes represent six communities: Ancaster, Dundas, Flamborough, Glanbrook, Hamilton and Stoney Creek. It’s a great kit, but Y9 fans will surely be giving them grief for the meaning behind it.
5) FC Edmonton away
The highest away kit on the list, FC Edmonton start my top five. While it does continue the pattern of hiding cool details under the arm, it also has a lot more going for it. There’s a silhouette of the Alberta Legislature Building, and around it is a pool of blue, representing the North Saskatchewan River. Sort of a paint splatter effect, it makes this kit better than most of the other away kits, as it’s colourful and not relying on a single highlight. It’s one of the best kits of the season, and deserving of a place in the top five in my opinion.
4) York9 FC home
While I wasn’t a fan of their away kit, York9’s home shirt is one of the best this season. The expected nine stripes make their way down the middle of the kit, and really stand out on the white background. Like the FC Edmonton home kit, there isn’t a lot going on, but that’s what makes it so good. It isn’t too busy like their away kit, and the simplicity works wonders.
3) Cavalry FC home
This is where the elite-level kits begin. I moved these top three around about a hundred times, as all are spectacular, but we’re starting with Cavalry FC’s home kit. An updated version of their 2019 home kit, it again honours the uniform of Lord Strathcona’s Horse regiment. The white sash is a bit more subtle, but still prominent, and the fading diagonal stripes are brilliant on the red background.
2) Atletico Ottawa home
The only negative thing about this kit is that we already knew exactly what it was going to look like. As they’re owned by Atletico Madrid, their kit was always going to look like their parent club’s, but I think this is a fresh take on a timeless classic.
The famous Atletico red and white stripes are the main feature, and the “Rideau blue” accents and sponsor are superb. On the back of the kit, under the player’s number, is a dark red maple leaf. Atletico Ottawa will be playing their inaugural season in style.
1) HFX Wanderers home
We’ve reached number one on my list. HFX have one of my favourite colour schemes in the league, and used it very well again in 2020. Across the front of the kit is a soundwave of “Barrett’s Privateers” by Stan Rogers, a famous folk song on the east coast. The blue to white gradient on the kit is also symbolic, “inspired by the blue of the Atlantic Ocean to the light Halifax sky.”
This kit is sensational, and worthy of being number one in my opinion.
Disagree with my selections? Let us know what you think of the kits in the comments!